Skip to comments.The Biological Case Against Race
Posted on 06/04/2002 5:24:31 PM PDT by cornelis
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:^ 0 Ice cream everybody!!!!!
I was brought up in the "post-racist" world, and all my education, and those whom I looked up to, taught that there is no real difference based on color. I know this sounds frightful, but over the years I have come to feel that there are real differences between the races. I have based this on experience, and travel, and learning to recongise and respect difference. It is hard to say if these differences are the result of culture or race.
One consequence of modern reproductive technologies is that we will be able to determine if genetic material, on its own, can determine individual characteristics. Up until now, the only studies done on "acquired vs inherited" characteristics, have been done on identical twins seperated a birth (limited and unreliable studies.)
BTW - did you know that chimps and humans differ in their DNA by only 1.5%? We're about 98.5% identical! So, I guess we're really just the same as chimps! And we're really just the same as the gorillas and the spider monkeys as well. Heck, we're probably only about %5 different from a shark! We should make sharks citizens! Oh, wait, we already have lawyers, that's right.
What a seriously rank load of hogwash. I'm no genetic scientist but I can look at Africa and see just what happens when the Europeans who built cities on that continent leave those cities behind to the natives. Hmmm, some peoples build cities, some peoples tear them down. No, no difference between them at all. Then I look here at formerly great cities like Detroit, populated with people who have been American citizens for generations. Hmmm. What do these examples have in common?
This is a very serious case of the Emperor having no clothes whatsoever.
Culture and individual variation are the major determinants of behavior. Race is a strong self-association factor -- we grow up with our own race, we tend to hand around with our own race, hence cultural identity tends to break along racial groupings.
There ARE real differences, and there's nothing frightful about speaking the truth. Acknowledging that there are differences does not make one a "racist" any more than acknowledging that the differences between men and women aren't just "social constructs" makes one a "sexist". Some of the differences make people of different races generally better at/worse at specific functions of modern life, but there are such huge variations within each race, that this does not provide justification for different treatment of people of different races. It does, however, provide nullification of the concept that unequal results are necessarily the result of "discrimination" -- a concept which remains quite popular in our legal system.
Scientists don't "know" any such thing! This is merely wishful thinking - something that the Hudson Institute specializes in.
First, any student anatomist can identify a person's race by a variety of physical features. Forensic pathologists can often identify a person's race by a single tooth or a few bones.
Second, when it comes to genes, it is much more honest to say that based on the current state of knowledge scientists cannot identify a person's race by analyzing his genes. To point out that there is very little genetic diversity between humans of all races does not mean there aren't meaningful differences between the races. Sometimes, a single genetic defect can make a HUGE difference in a person's wellbeing. Or, look at it this way: Chimps and humans share over 98% of their genetic makeup. Clearly, that 2% makes a LOT of difference.
What bothers me most about this pseudo-scientific hokum that tries to say there are no differences between the races is that it begs the question: Why the disparity in behavior and outcomes? If we are all the same, then why do blacks - 13% of the population - make up only 2% of corporate executives and commit 50% of the crime? Why has black student achievement lagged that of whites at the same rate for nearly 30 years - ever since the government has measured it - despite $billions of government money? If we are all the same - THEN WHITE PEOPLE MUST BE RACIST OPPRESSORS WHO WILL NOT/CANNOT CHANGE. If you were black and believed that the only reason you were not doing as well as whites was because they have been keeping you down for hundreds of years and show no sign of every stopping, how long would YOU put up with this situation?
The core ideological principle that maintains racism is the mistaken belief thatI donno ... Most people have always assumed that #1 is true, but I never believed in #2. I don't see why the two propositions have to go together.
 biological races really exist in the human species and that
 individual aspects of character and morality can be identified by one's racial ancestry.
I would put forth that most "racial" variations of behavior are more due to cultural influences than genetic.
LOL, what a coincidence! That's what the author claims in his book! You are a whiz.
Well, you would be wrong.
Twin studies show that genetics accounts for 97% of variability in fingerprints (duh!); 70% of IQ, 50% of sexual behavior, 50% of criminal activity and 40% of social attitudes.
Average IQ level of blacks is 15 points lower than whites. Average testosterone levels are 10-20% higher in college-age black males than whites. IQ and testosterone levels are key ingredients in behavior among young males.
I agree completely. It isn't about despising anyone. In fact many racial/or cultural characteristics are about being adjusted to ones way of life and environment. But I think that it should make Western law-givers, in aid agencies and the UN etc., a bit less confident about telling various nations that they should get rid of this or that "repressive" social restriction. Maybe they should, but it is up to them to work it out. And maybe they shouldn't, because sometimes things which appear harsh to us in fact serve a useful function within a different society.
While there are no Shaqs from the Phillipines and no Einsteins from South Africa, there are Thomas Sowells and Michelle Kwans and multitudes of gifted people of all colors who can only be sorted through the give and take of free societies. And who decides what is smart or athletic, the criteria change continuously? The oldest bloodlines come out of Africa, according to Cavalli Sforza (who is big in the anti-race debate). Yet, given that datum how stupid could Shaq be making as much in a year as most make in a few lifetimes?
So, the question is not whether there are differences, but what you would do about it if there were. And bluntly, you'd do nothing but let people attain their own levels. So, I believe the above article is a feel-good sham, but the truth wouldn't change anything anyway, we all have to get up in the morning and go to work. I just wish I worked for the Lakers.
What a utterly hopeless mess of a book - ten years from now he will have to write a complete retraction.